We are a Green Meeting
The Austrian EU Presidency is organising all its events in a sustainable and green fashion – and we are proud to announce that the European Union Youth Conference will be a Green Event too – “This event fulfills the Österreichische Umweltzeichen eco-label’s criteria for green meetings.”
Austrian Eco-Label – Österreichisches Umweltzeichen
In 1990 the Austrian Eco-label was created on the initiative of the Environment Ministry. The label informs the public about the environmental impacts of products and services. It marks environmentally-friendly product options for consumers.
The Austrian Eco-label is a quality certification mark which at the same time guarantees that the certified products and services create only low environmental stress. Furthermore, wherever possible and useful also criteria from the other pillars of sustainability (social and economic criteria) are taken into account in the preparation of the specific Guidelines. The Austrian Eco-label is awarded to products and tourist services as well as to schools and other educational institutions.
Eco-label Guideline 62 “Green Meetings and Green Events” sets environmental and social standards for the event-organising enterprise as well as for all individual aspects of a meeting.
What can we do?
Sustainable Event Management
Sustainable Event Management can happen on different levels and through various measures. We will do as much as we can in order to meet all the criteria for organising a Green Meeting and even more. We are striving to host the Youth Conference in a sustainable, inclusive and participatory way and therefore we are actively contributing to this aim with the following measures (a selection):
Mobility and climate protection
- Car-free transportation to the meeting (The nearest international airport or international railway station to the location where the meeting takes place can be reached within five hours using public transport.)
- Mobility for side events (Side events, e.g. evening programme locations are organised in a way that the destinations are within walking distance or can be reached using public transport or a share-ride shuttle service.)
- Gender mainstreaming and diversity (The programme design takes care to use gender-fair wording; takes care to having a gender balance, i.e. half of the presenters and speakers are women; takes account of further aspects of diversity.)
- Barrier-free homepage (The meeting has a barrier-free homepage which exceeds the minimum requirements (conformity stage A) for barrier-free web design of homepages (according to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (W CAG) 2.0).)
Procurement, material and waste management for the meeting
- Food and drinks without catering/gastronomy (If, in addition to the catering, the host itself provides a small amount of food and/or drinks: exclusively reusable dishes are used; no cans are used/offered; in the case of drinks exclusively reusable packages or bulk packs are used; tap water is provided free of charge; no coffee/tea machines with capsule systems are used.)
- Resource requirements for paper/printing (Any and all printed products of relevance to the meeting (invitations, conference folders, documentations, posters etc.) are produced according to the principle of minimum resource expenditure: small number of copies, small printing format, double-sided copies, replacing by electronic carriers, mail services, internet, apps etc.)
- Giveaways from the host (None of the giveaways is battery- or accu-driven; all giveaways are unpacked and either made of environmentally friendly or natural materials or they carry a recognised quality seal (eco-label, organic seal, Fair Trade seal…).
- Waste management plan of the event location (The event location has a valid written waste management plan, if it is obligated under the law to do so.)
- Accessibility for disabled persons (The event location meets the minimum requirements of barrier-free equipment and facilities according to the Austrian standard ÖNORM B1600.)
- External communication concerning Green Meetings (The licensee and the host inform attendees and the public at an early time about the greening measures and sustainability standards of the event: In the invitation, upon registration, via the website, on programme folders, via various media etc. Event attendees are requested and motivated to promote the greening measures and to take part in them.)
Catering and Gastronomy
- Reusable dishes (In the guest area exclusively reusable cups, reusable dishes (plates, bowls) and reusable cutlery are used.)
- Vegetarian meal (At least one vegetarian or vegan meal is offered.)
What can you do?
Your actions also matter and therefore we ask you for your contribution in implementing the Youth Conference as a Green Meeting by considering e.g. one of the following steps:
- If possible, choose an environmentally-friendly way of travelling to Vienna and use public transport or walk when travelling around Vienna.
- Turn off all lights and electrical devices (TV, air conditioning, heating, computer, etc.) when you are not in your hotel room.
- No single portion packages = more environmental protection: if possible, drink beverages served out of jugs or large bottles, eat meals served on reusable dishes, and use milk and sugar not packaged in individual portions.
- Recycle your waste (plastic drink bottles, glass, paper, metal, batteries, etc.) by disposing of it in the containers provided at the conference centre.
- If possible, use digital devices instead of paper.
- At the end of the event, place your badges in the container provided at the accreditation desk on Level 0.